Erasmus: You really cannot vote!

Posted by AEGEE-Europe on 23/01/13

Italian Erasmus students and young people abroad for the General Election 2013: the final decision of the Consiglio dei Ministri and the surprising reaction of the Italian Erasmus students.


The Council of Ministers held yesterday a meeting with a deep evaluation about the institution of the vote for the Italian General Election 2013 while being abroad for Italian students involved in the Erasmus Programme. During the debate some “insuperable difficulties” (as it was written in the official communication) emerged: the time for changing a constitutional law is too short. The Council of Ministers wishes for the resolution of this important issue in the future, and it will have to be the new elected Parliament to include the necessary changes in a future electoral reform. Creating an ad hoc decree for the Erasmus students has been discarded, as the Council of Ministers considers that this exceptional measure would be a privilege discriminating other students, interns and workers abroad, and therefore could be unconstitutional.

We consider that what should be revised is the constitutionality of the Italian Law 232 – 31/12/2012, which provides only certain collectives with the right to vote  while being abroad and not been registered in the AIRE registry. The law now allows to vote only the:

  • members of the Army and Police who are abroad in an international mission
  • civil servants who are abroad because of their job
  • University professors and researchers, and their family members

AEGEE-Europe is very satisfied by the reaction of young people, as it has been surprisingly fast and creative: they have mobilized through the social networks, and are already organizing polling stations all around Europe to show all politicians how their vote could have changed the result of the elections. All they require for the symbolic voting is their identity card. For now polling stations are confirmed in Madrid, Paris, Toulouse, Tenerife, Bruxelles, Heidelberg, Cork, London, Lisbon, Potsdam and Valladolid. But more will come soon.

AEGEE-Europe is pleased to see that young Italians do not give up easily in their claim for rights and they have found a constructive approach to continue their claim. With their example they are doing a great service to promotion of democracy in Italy and in Europe.

The page to join the initiative and check how they are arranging their campaign is here.



One Response to Erasmus: You really cannot vote! »»

  1. Comment by Christophe Leclercq, Fondateur EurActiv | 2013/01/25 at 15:23:45

    Have you considered a Citizen Initiative, more broadly, to get national voting rights for all people posted abroad?

    Sounds similar in spirit (not identical) to the LetMeVote initiative (disclosure: which I am supporting). You can find it on

    Good continuation!

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